Things 7 & 8 – Professional secrecide

Having developed a bit of a presence on Linkedin and Researchgate prior to 23thinging, and having already prattled on about them a bit, I decided to focus this week’s thingy on Prior to this week I only knew the website by name, I didn’t know much else beyond what can be assumed from the learned title…

So, apparently PLOS ONE found that papers uploaded to academia receive a 69% boost in citations over 5 years, which is, like, 13.8% per year – I had to use a calculator for that but I think the point eight percent is important! My publication list stretches to all of 1, which, according to Pub Med, has been cited an astonishing 3 times in three years…that’s 1 per year! (no calculator required)

With giddy thoughts of an extra 0.138 citations per year, off I clicked…


On the face of it Academia seems very similar in concept and content to Researchgate – upload your work, follow people, get followed, receive moral boosting notifications when someone reads your work and then watch the citations roll in. And like most sites these days that require you to create a profile, it’s made quicker and easier by clicking through facebook or google+. This does save time and it is easier but I’m always a little nervous about the little box that pops up telling me they’re going to harvesting all my information.

It’s hard to see what Academia adds on top of Researchgate aside from a little bit more exposure…the networking aspect is there but it lacks a lot of the features that make Researchgate such a useful platform, like skill endorsements. I am reliably informed, however, that Academia will notify me when I’ve been googled, who by and where they are, which is exciting – if it ever happens. Anyway, I’m on, the paper is uploaded and now just a short 7.246 years to wait for my 1 citation boost…:)

Thing 1 – LinkedIn or Out?

As most of us are aware, the number of professional – and indeed scientific – social networking platforms has increased dramatically over the last decade (or so) following the launch of arguably the most famous in 2002 – LinkedIn. The pressure, therefore, for students and professionals, young and old, to establish an online presence is greater than ever. This pressure can come from academic supervisors, bosses or even from within and often centres on career advancement – getting a job, getting a promotion, making the right connections etc. As a result it can be a daunting arena to enter – one wrong move or comment or post can have dire consequences!


My current exposure in the world of professional social media includes the aforementioned LinkedIn, and ResearchGate, which is a publication driven network and therefore much more scientifically orientated. The sheer number of networks available to join on LinkedIn means there will always be useful connections to be made and help to be found, but sifting through spam and volume to get to the prize can often be a major headache. Necessity dictated my introduction to ResearchGate following the publication of my first paper in 2013 and it has certainly helped the research reach more people than journal access alone – as my doctoral studies progress I can see the site being an increasingly frequent feature of my internet history! However, in both cases I don’t feel as if I have even close to fully engaged with the social process…and so…the aim of this endeavour is to analyse and explore my use of social media in a professional context and discover new techniques and platforms in the hope of getting more out of this expanding arena…all the while simultaneously providing some brief commentaries 🙂